Wednesday, October 27

Simple Pleasures

Well, a few chilly nights and clear days provided a wake-up call that winter's approaching. Today seemed positively balmy in contrast.
These lovely sunflowers have brought style to the kitchen all week. It's a bright room if the sun shines, and if the stove is on as well, some of us are in seventh heaven...

The human contingent has beavered away at various projects. Hugh's been fencing and putting up gutters as well as researching routes for Far x Four, and me? Paintbrushes in hand at Tart HQ and stitching up new covers for the seating there too. In between times I have been knitting hats in handspun and worrying whether I have enough stock for impending fairs.

My first outing is to St Abbs Wool Festival on Saturday 6th November, with handspun and pretty buttons, fancy threads, handknits and new wee kits - lots of stocking-filler priced goodies for the discerning textile lover. Hope to see many friendly faces there!

Friday, October 22

Mild excitement...

OK, that's a HUGE understatement.

I am dead chuffed


THIS!What you see before you, ladies and gentlemen, is a borrowed tractor attached to the first and only TART HQ. Shortly after this calm and relaxed photograph was taken, the heavens opened and the tractor driver swung the caravan backwards across the road in order to reverse it up the side of the shed and into the garden. The operation did not go smoothly. However, men and machines won the day and TART HQ is now safely tethered. Work has commenced by yours truly on the interior. Photographs will be taken and you will be kept fully informed of developments. Oh yes, you will...

Sunday, October 17

Autumn Glory

I love this time of the year, especially when we do get a proper autumn, with nippy mornings, clear skies and so much soft colour in the natural world. We're very fortunate to live where we do, with open views over the countryside and expansive skies. The quality of light is soft and rich.
Most of our walks involve the dogs, of course, but last week Hugh and I had a little outing by ourselves. We wandered through the rides and pathways at Monteviot, along part of the avenue planted with Wellingtonias, and round to a stile below the monument on Penielheugh. The land round here falls within Lothian Estates. Despite what you may read elsewhere, the monument IS open to the public. For a mere £2 you can borrow the key from the Estate Office (01835 862201) near Jedburgh and climb up to the top for an even better outlook over the River Teviot and surrounding farmland.The views from the top were pretty impressive in all directions on this crisp clear day. There are the Eildon hills in the distance.
On our return we enjoyed a restorative coffee and home baked cake at Woodside Walled Garden and watched the garden birds tucking into their feeders with similar enthusiasm...

Thursday, October 7

W. I. P.

There is lots going on here at present but some of it is under wraps till it's fit to be seen, or till I remember during daylight hours to take pictures of it...

Hugh's putting a new roof on the woodshed. This is not a small undertaking as he is single handedly removing a very leaky corrugated iron roof and replacing it with box-section steel sheets, by means of brute strength while standing in the trailer attached to a borrowed tractor. The woodshed is 6.5 metres long and about 4 metres deep (it usually houses a vehicle and trailer as well as wood!). Dry still days would be perfect - hmm, sometimes it's still but wet, other times its dry but windy... But he's winning!

I've been doing a spot of demolition and am now applying some paint to walls. I hope you'll be suitably impressed when the images make it online!

Meanwhile, it's only a matter of a few weeks until the Woolfish wool festival at St Abbs on November 6th and I am spinning yarns, and planning to conjure up another knitting pattern for it too. There are other new creations in the pipeline, or at any rate in my head...

I recently bought a substantial stock of stunningly lovely cotton perle threads, many of which I will be offering for sale singly. In order to demonstrate one of their myriad uses, I started work on a ... well, I am not sure yet what it will be. The base fabric is my much loved merino wool sweater which a well-meaning but over-enthusiastic Hugh managed to shrink to dollsize (and I ain't no doll).
I am using one skein of the space dyed cotton to stitch with and this is how it looks so far.

and a closer look...
It's fun to just make it up as you go along and see what transpires.
Maybe I should adopt that as my mantra!